Posted by Gillian Fealy

Imagine yourself crossing the finish line. Hands held high. The crowd is cheering. A medal is draped around your neck. You did it. You completed the 5k. Imagine this as you. No matter what hesitation, fear and self-doubt might be creeping into your mind right now- you can do this.

So how do I get started? Here’s the 101 on doing a 5k:

How long is a 5k?

A 5k is 3.1 miles of fun.


Do I have to run it?

Absolutely not! There are no time limits for how long it takes. There are no style points for how pretty it looks. You can walk it. You can run it. You can crawl it. You just have to keep moving for 3.1 miles.


What gear do I need to get started?

That’s the beauty of walking and running- you don’t need much. The number one item we recommend to athletes is a good pair of shoes. Go to your local walk/run store and get fitted for a pair of shoes. This will keep you comfortable and help prevent injury.


What does a 5k training plan look like?

The best piece of advice we have for completing a 5k is to have a plan. A plan is what will keep you committed and motivated to reaching your goal. There are 5k training plans for every athlete’s goal- walker to runner. A 5k training program is at least 8 weeks long. Training plans will usually have you walking or running 3-4 times a week. On your rest days, you should do some sort of recovery activity, such as stretching on your own or yoga. Strength training is always a great way to make you stronger and prevent injuries. Consider doing it 1-2 times per week during the training program.


I’m not sure I can do a 5k?

That is a completely normal fear and often, understandably, stops us from trying. When we set a goal the only next step is to work towards that goal. The most inspiring part of setting a goal is the perseverance towards that goal, despite the outcome. Because, sometimes we reach our goals and sometimes we learn from our experiences and try again. But, it’s the passion and perseverance that shows grit. And, people with grit do amazing things. So don’t worry about crossing that finish line. Just choose to take the challenge. It’s the journey that’s inspiring, not the destination.


Are you ready? Let’s do this.